Funeral tributes to 'political battler' Bobby Molloy
Published 06/10/2016 | 02:30
The future of Ireland is secure if she can continue to produce such "good and wholesome people" as Bobby Molloy, mourners at the funeral of the prominent politician heard.
Former Progressive Democrats leaders Dessie O'Malley, Mary Harney and Michael McDowell were amongst those who attended the requiem Mass at Galway Cathedral for the founder of their now defunct party.
Staunch political battler Mr Molloy (80) had been a member of Fianna Fáil, holding the posts of defence, local government and energy minister, but founded the Progressive Democrats because of his disapproval of Charles Haughey as a leader.
Mr Molloy is survived by his wife Phyllis, children Sinéad, Sorcha, Daragh and Donncha and seven grandchildren.
President Michael D Higgins was represented by his Aide de Camp Col Michael Kiernan, while First Lady Sabina Higgins was in attendance. Taoiseach Enda Kenny was represented by his Aide de Camp Comdt Kieran Carey.
Former Taoiseach Brian Cowen, Fianna Fáil leader Michéal Martin, former Minister for Foreign Affairs David Andrews, TD Eamon O Cúiv and former Progressive Democrats TD Noel Grealish were also in attendance, as were Judge Geoffrey Browne and John Tierney, formerly of Irish Water.
Mr Molloy was recalled at the funeral by chief celebrant Fr Gerry Jennings, a family friend, as a man of "integrity, personal warmth, humility and intelligence". Everyone knew him as "Bobby" - except for his family, he remarked, to whom he was always "Robbie".
"So long as Ireland can produce such good and wholesome people as Robbie, our future is secure," he said.
Mr Molloy's daughter Sinéad said her father had represented Galway West for 37 years, but could not have achieved what he did but for the "support and loyalty" of his colleagues. Poignantly, she revealed that Mr Molloy had battled Alzheimer's, but knew his family right up to the end.